Winners and losers in Bradley Stoke bus shake-up

Route map for the 73, 74 and X73 services in Bradley Stoke, Bristol.

The south of Bradley Stoke will get a much improved daytime bus service from Sunday (2nd September), when First Group introduces the new 74 service, but other parts of the town will see services reduced.

The new service, which replaces the U7 and U8 services currently run by Wessex Connect and the 73B run by First Group, will serve Bradley Stoke Way (south of the Leisure Centre), Webbs Wood Road and Baileys Court Road. It will run every 20 minutes during the day Monday to Friday, every 30 minutes during the day on Saturdays and hourly on Sundays and Public Holidays.

Like the 73B, the new 74 will operate via the Willow Brook Centre, meaning that the daytime frequency of buses serving the shopping centre will increase significantly.

Changes are also being made to the 73 service, which will, for example, see its frequency reduced to every 20 minutes during the day Monday to Friday (previously every 12 minutes).

On sections of the Cribbs Causeway to Bristol routes that are shared by the 73 and 74, passengers will enjoy an improved frequency of “every 10 minutes” during the day on weekdays but users in North Bradley Stoke and the middle part of Brook Way, which are not served by the 74, will see fewer buses.

Journey times for passengers boarding city-bound 74 buses prior to the Willow Brook Centre are likely to be around five minutes longer that the 73, due to the longer route length and time-consuming passage through the shopping centre’s barrier system.

Although the 74 service is described as a “commercial service” in a recent press release put out by South Gloucestershire Council (SGC), the timetable states that “services on Bank Holidays, certain evening journeys and certain Sunday journeys are provided with financial support [from SGC]”, an arrangement that also applied to the 73B.

More info: Timetable for 73/74/X73 from 2nd September (SGC) [PDF]

Winners and losers (Monday to Friday daytime)

Bus stops with significantly improved frequency: Savages Wood Roundabout, The Bridge, Webbs Wood Roundabout, Webbs Wood Road, Ellan Hay Road, Great Meadow Roundabout, Hunters Ridge, Baileys Court Inn and Sherbourne Avenue.

Bus stops with reduced frequency: Woodlands Park, Newleaze, Eagles Wood, Foxfield Avenue, Westfield Way, Trench Lane, Ormonds Close, Tresham Close, Campion Drive, Chessel Close, Linden Drive and Braydon Avenue.

Related link: Bus Services in Bradley Stoke (The Journal)

A U7 bus at a stop in Webbs Wood Road, Bradley Stoke, Bristol.

Photo: Wessex Connect U7 service – being replaced by First Group’s 74 from Sunday 2nd September 2012.

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  1. A drop of 12 minute to 20 minute frequency is not to bad.

    It is a shame that SGC and First Bus could not have thought of a way to link the empty car park behind Bristol Parkway and a better local bus services.

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